BULLHEAD CITY — The Drug Enforcement and Administration is holding its 18th National Drug Take-Back Day on Oct. 26.

One of the participating agencies in the national initiative is the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Colorado River Station in Needles.

People can take their prescription drugs to 1111 Bailey Ave. from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 26.

The Bullhead City Police Department won’t be participating in the Oct. 26 event since it participated in April.

“However, BHCPD offers a permanent venue for people who want to safely and anonymously dispose of their unwanted, unused or expired prescription medications,” said Emily Fromelt, department public information officer. “While on Oct. 26, we won’t have a drop-off set up for the DEA event, our permanent prescription slot is located on the counter in the Bullhead City Police Department lobby, 1255 Marina Blvd., during regular business hours Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.”

Fromelt said that all pills must be placed in a plastic baggie, which is provided at the counter free of charge. Medications in a blister pack may be left in their original packaging.

“Please remove or blackout personal information on prescription bottles before putting them in the thrash, once they’ve been emptied into a provided Ziploc baggie,” said Fromelt. “Once medication has been disposed into the collection box, it will be destroyed as all drugs will be received as abandoned property.”

Fromelt said that acceptable items include all expired or unwanted prescriptions and over-the-counter medications.

Unacceptable Items include syringes/injectables, intravenous solutions, liquid products, such as cough syrup, illegal substances such as marijuana or methamphetamine, personal/business mail, plastic containers and general trash items.

The DEA said the public last April turned in a record-setting amount of nearly 1 million pounds — 468 tons — of potentially dangerous, expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs for disposal at close to 6,300 collection sites across the country. That brought the total amount of prescription drugs collected by DEA since the fall of 2010 to 11.8 million pounds — 5,908.2 tons.

The DEA said that the initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. The DEA advised that the usual methods many people use for disposing of medicines — flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash — pose potential safety and health hazards.

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